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What practical steps should I take if I'm being abused?

If you're being abused, or you're afraid of someone in your home, there are steps you can take to keep you (and your children, if you have any) safe.

What practical steps can I take if I'm being abused?

If you need protection during a violent incident, call the police on 999 or 112. If you're using a mobile phone, dial 112 so that they can trace your call. The police have a duty to protect you and any children and make sure you are safe. They may arrest your partner. They may go with you to a safe place if you need to leave the home so as to be safe. They can tell you about emergency housing and refuges.

If you want help from the police at some point after you were abused, you can ring your local police station (their number is in the phone book) and ask to speak to the community safety officer (sometimes called the domestic violence officer. See also How can the police help me?

You may have to leave your home for a few days to go to a safe place while you sort out your legal position. You will not lose your rights to the home if you do this. For help and advice, call the confidential 24-hour National Domestic Violence freephone helpline on 0808 2000 247.

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What if I've been injured during the abuse?

If you have any sort of injury, get it treated and recorded. Go to your GP or the local hospital casualty department. Even if you find it embarrassing, tell them how the injury occurred and ask them to note this on your records. This is because you may need a medical report if your case goes to court. If your injuries are visible, like bruises or cuts, try to get a photograph of them.

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What you can do now:

  • Call the confidential 24-hour National Domestic Violence freephone helpline on 0808 2000 247
  • Get help and advice from Women's Aid (this link opens in a new window)
  • Text 'legalaid' then your name to 80010 and we'll call you back within 24 hours.

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